Consultant Paediatrician, Dr Sal Uka, explains how the proposed future arrangements for Paediatrics would have significant benefits for children, young people and staff.
Our proposed changes for paediatric services would, for the first time, bring together all medical and surgical services for children into one specially designed Paediatric Emergency Centre at Calderdale Royal Hospital (CRH).
The new Centre would be a specialist unit for children and young people, staffed by specialist paediatric doctors, nurses and therapists, who would be on hand in an emergency, in an environment that is suitable for children.
The new arrangements would be a significant improvement on the current split site arrangement, where medical patients are at Calderdale Royal Hospital and surgical patients are at Huddersfield Royal Infirmary.
The majority of paediatric consultants and nurses work at Calderdale Royal Hospital, but we simply don’t have the same level of consultant input on the Huddersfield site.
At the moment children are being transferred between sites, with staff spread across both our hospitals.
The current arrangements do not comply with the recommendations of the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health and national standards for children and young people in emergency settings.
Children don’t always come to hospital with an initially obvious diagnosis.
They would benefit from being in one specialist unit staffed by A&E consultants with expertise in paediatrics and consultant paediatricians, who together with a team dedicated paediatric staff, would coordinate their care with other specialist services.
As a specialist Paediatric Emergency Centre, we would be able to attract and retain staff.
More doctors, nurses and therapists would want to come and work with us.
Having one Paediatric Emergency Centre for children, where we can make sure that appropriate support and teams are in place, would make things a lot safer for children in Calderdale and Huddersfield, and would be a much improved working environment for our staff.